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THE

FIRST BOOK

'i '' .

O F

T A T I U

HIS

r H E B A I S.

Translated by Mr. ¥ O P E,

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The Argument.

OEdipus King of Thebes having by mistake stain. his Father Laius, and marry"d his Mother Jocasta, put out his own Eyes, and resign'd the Realm to his Sons, Etheocles and Polynices. Being neglected by them, he makes his "Prayer to the Fury Tisiphone, to sow Debate betwixt the Brothers. They agree at last to Reign stngly, each a Tear by turns, and the first Lot is obtain d by Etheocles: The Murmurs of the People on this occasion are described in an excellent Speech. Jupiter, in a Council of the Gods, declares his Resolution of punishing the Thebans, and Argives also, by means of a Marriage betwixt Polynices and one of the Daughters of Adrastus King of Argos. Juno opposes, but to no effect; and Mercury is sent on a Mejsage to the Shades, to the Ghost 0/Laius, who is to appear £0 Etheocles, and provoke him to break the Agreement. Polynices in the mean time departs from Thebes by Night, is overtaken by a Storm, and arrives at Argos; where he meets with

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Tydeus, who had fled from Calydon, having kilPd his Brother. Adrastus entertains them, having receiv'd an Oracle from Apollo that his Daughters Jhou'd be marry*d to a Boar and a Lion, which he understands to be meant of these Strangers by whom the Hydes of those Beasts were worn, and who arriv'd at the time when he kept an annual Feast in honour of that God. The Rise of this Solemnity he relates to his Guests, the Loves of Phœbus and Psamathe, and the Story of Coræbus. He enquires, and is made acquainted with, their Descent and Quality; The Sacrifice is renew'd, and the Book Concludes with a Hymn to Apollo.

The Translator hopes he needs not Apologize for his Choice of this Piece, which was made almost in his Childhood. But finding the Version better, upon-Review, than he expected from those Year.s, he was easily prevail'd upon to give it some Correction, the rather, because no Part of this Author (at least that fae knows of) has been tolerably turn'd into our Language.

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Raternal Rage, the guilty Thebe's Alarms, Th'Alternate Reign destroys hy Impious Demand our Song; a sacred Fury fires My ravish'd Breast, and All the Muse inspires^ O Goddess, fay, shall I deduce my Rhimes From the dire Nation in its early Times,

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